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Hammerson report quantifies true value of Birmingham shopping centres to local economy

The Bullring Estate in Birmingham attracts more than £362m of indirect investment in the city every year, creates more than 4,300 full time jobs with wages of more than £88m, and generates more than £22m in business rates, according to a new study.

Property group Hammerson, the estate’s owner, has published the figures in its True Value of Retail Report, to coincide with the 15th anniversary of the modern Bullring’s opening. It is seeking to measure the wider socio-economic impact of the estate, which includes the Bullring and the adjacent Grand Central and Link Street developments, and set benchmarks for future performance. Hammerson plans to optimise positive impacts from its portfolio of shopping centres.

Hammerson managing director Mark Bourgeois
Hammerson managing director Mark Bourgeois

“Birmingham is a thriving city and, as this research clearly identifies, the Bullring Estate plays a central role in its success. The indirect investment of more than £362m highlights the scale of the positive impact the Bullring Estate has on the city,” says Hammerson UK and Ireland managing director Mark Bourgeois.

“More than that, this research highlights how retail and leisure destinations act as economic hubs for cities,” adds Bourgeois. “This is a central theme of Hammerson’s portfolio strategy, from the line-up of brands to driving value in the wider community.  The Bullring Estate shows this being done to best effect, and we are very proud of the contribution it has made to Birmingham over the last 15 years, and will continue to make in the future.”

Hammerson group head of sustainability Louise Ellison adds that design of shopping centres makes a substantial contribution to the impact that they make – but that quantifying that contribution is difficult. “The key elements are about the public realm, and I would argue that includes the aesthetic standards of what we create. It drives footfall. You get more people, and increase the dwell time and, possibly, the amount of money they spend.”